SA-born entrepreneur making waves in San Francisco fintech space

South African-born Ryan Gilbert is making some big waves in the international fintech space. This comes after the serial entrepreneur joined the board of San Francisco’s Propel Venture Partners — a VC firm which recently received US$250-million from Spanish banking giant BBVA to invest in financial innovations.

As part of the deal, the San Francisco Business Times reports, BBVA is shutting down its corporate-venture arm. Gilbert will be joining Propel’s other managing partners are Jay Reinemann and Tom Whiteaker.

The bank’s venture portfolio includes the renowned Silicon Valley accelerator programme 500 Startups, bitcoin wallet and exchange company Coinbase as well as the likes of Sum Up and Taulia.

Read more: Why SweepSouth believes in US-based 500 Startups incubator

Gilbert earned his Bachelor of Commerce and Bachelor of Laws degrees from the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg in the early 1990s after which he moved over to California. He then founded Better Finance (previously known as BillFloat), which has gone on to raise US$37-million in various rounds and recorded record growth.

Read more: Gyft founder Vinny Lingham scores $2.75m for identity protection startup

According to San Francisco Business Times, Better Finance was the Bay Area’s fastest-growing private company last year, based on 3 000% revenue growth between 2012 and 2014.

He also founded and sold his second startup, PropertyBridge, for US$28-million in 2007.

Image via bizjournals



Sign up to our newsletter to get the latest in digital insights. sign up

Welcome to Ventureburn

Sign up to our newsletter to get the latest in digital insights.